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tv   The Last Word  MSNBC  January 19, 2013 1:00am-2:00am EST

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ceremony, and of course, the parade. there is a lot going on. it is a big day. at the retreat, the republicans are trying to figure out one of the hardest questions in all of politics. what do you do after you lose? >> all the talk about republicans on the ropes, conservatives and then retreat. we've come a long way since. >> and house gop leaders in virginia. >> getting advice on how to turn the party around. plotting their next moves at their annual retreat. >> face it, president obama won.
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>> the republicans lost. >> i told them, stick to your principles. >> we need a principled, conservative party. >> this is not about tactics. >> you guys lost. >> to figure out you lost every possible demographic there is. >> if there is a legitimate rape. >> stop talking about rape. >> find something else. >> i'm running for office, i can't have illegals, i want to protect legal immigration. >> they have a big problem in national elections. >> president obama has won the election. >> the president right now has a higher approval rating certainly than congress. >> horrible numbers for congress. >> a pitiful 14%. >> pretty bad numbers on john boehner's report card. >> the debt ceiling is a dangerous game. >> i don't see that as a winner for them. >> don't fight battles you can't win. >> it is a troubled time for the party. >> let's stop for a second. >> let's make clear decisions. >> the republican strategy. >> stop talking about rape. >> don't fight battles you can't win.
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>> it is a troubled time for the party, get something done. >> we have to be the party of new solutions, we're not just going to be the party of no. >> it is groundhog day. >> the conservatives, the retreat, we've come a long way since. >> i'm ezra klein in for lawrence o'donnell, one of the great moments, when redford having just won the election, sits down on the bed taking it all in. the next few words are not just to ever film junky, pretty much to every political candidate. >> what do we do now? >> what do we do now? that is always the question, what do you do now when you have to govern? but it is not just a question that affects winners, sometimes losers of elections have to ask what do we do now? and for them the question can be
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harder to answer, after all, the winner in theory should do whatever they promise to voters. but the losers just watch them say no, take the republican party, they just lost the 2012 election at every federal level, they lost the presidency, at the senate, and fewer votes than democrats did in the house of representatives. but due to the way the house districts are drawn, they're still in charge. so they're in kind of a weird position. the argument lost, the american people didn't want what they were selling. but they're not out of office, their constituents want them to fight for their ideals. what do you do now? how do you balance losing the national election and losing the argument but still being in power? over the last couple of days, house republicans have been gathered in williamsburg, virginia to try to sort that out. and discussions have started on what not to do. now, number one, don't say anymore dumb things about rape.
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according to reports, house republicans sat down with a gop pollster, in which they were told in no uncertain terms, rape is a four letter word. don't say it. okay, no more rape talk, check. number two, you lost the election, you can't just crash the economy if you don't get your way on the budget. this is, of course about the debt ceiling which smart republicans know full well is a trap for the gop. newt gingrich no stranger to setting up high-stakes showdowns with candidates, put it pretty clearly on joe. >> they have to find in the house a totally new strategy. i mean confronting -- everybody is talking about okay, now here comes the debt ceiling. i think that is frankly a dead loser, because in the end you know it is going to happen. the whole national financial system will come into washington by television and say oh, my god, this will be a gigantic heart attack, the entire economy will collapse, you guys can't be responsible.
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>> the only problem for john boehner and company, you couldn't just tell them they can't. they wouldn't accept that. so at the retreat this weekend, house republican leaders have been trying to coax their leaders down from the tree, not all the way, not completely on to solid ground, but maybe on a more secure branch. house majority leader eric cantor said next week, we'll authorize a three-month temporary debt limit to give them more time. further if they fail to pass the budget in that time, the members of congress won't be paid by the american people for failing to do their job. no budget, no way. so in other words, house republicans say they will raise the debt ceiling at least for now, raising it without actual passing of the equivalent number of spending cuts. you have to get every dollar for debt ceiling increases. they say the debt ceiling, they
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know it doesn't give them real leverage but gives them an opportunity to give real messaging. they wouldn't provide a show-down where they say not raising it. they come to terms with having lost the election. charles krauthammer wrote today, the general rule is from the single house of congress, you can't impose, aren't you failing the country? the country chose obama, if you want to save the republic, save the next election. if your conservative philosophy is indeed right, winning will come. joining me now, robert costa, and dave weigel, both of them doing great reporting, i appreciate you being here. robert, i want to start with you, tell me the thinking behind the three-month extension, why three months?
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>> a lot of it has to do public relations, i think what i heard from the retreat, and members in the room, they want to start to win the pr battle again, to do it they have to take the debt limit off the table, and fight with spending in regard to the upcoming defense cuts, the sequester. they want to put the debt limit off for three months, get it out of the headlines, not let the president use it as a republican punching bag. trying to tell his colleagues, come to the center, let's move on to other issues. >> one of the interesting things about the way they did it and in doing it for only three months, dave, when you do it for three months the idea is you can always come back to it if you want. but it seems to me, certainly the way it is being reacted to or being read in the press, in saying there is going to be a three-month extension before the debate, they are saying we know we can't win a fight. we know we'll cave at the end of that.
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so seems like the threat is no longer credible. >> a lot of it did, what the republicans were saying, they were trying to educate their new members on exactly how the debt ceiling worked because that might not have been done last time. and paul ryan has the sort of, these are not the androids you're looking for, this will allow it to be your principle -- they just convince them -- over the course of a couple of days that they will have three pivot points, they will be able to say the onus is on the president to pass the budget. the first time they were able to look reasonable since 2009. they brought them around on it. they're asking for a nearly clean extension. i was talking to a john boehner spokesperson after this was presented and we were asking, didn't the boehner rule say we need cuts for every dollar of debt limit increase? he said well, the boehner rule
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is cuts versus reform. they're trying to sell that is not backing away from what they did before, but it kind of -- kind of is. >> it does seem like it kind of is, but going three months into the future, let's say you get the budgets passed. you have two other moments for fiscal showdown, you have the spending sequester, cuts to defense and then the spending programs. you have continuing resolution, which funds the government. if we don't come to an agreement, has a government shutdown. i had a senate aide saying it is a fact of the senate that people are just breathing a sigh of relief, we may just have a government shutdown. doesn't seem to me there is a clear path, you could have a shutdown. if that lasts for a long time as it did in the '90s, that comes at the tail end of that, shutting down the government, that would be pretty dramatic. >> they made two calculations here.
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they wanted to have a fight on the shutdown as related to a continuing resolution, but you don't hear any republican talking about moving towards default. they don't want to be politically associated with default. maybe you're right, they will be willing to have a shut down if they don't give them a cut on continuing resolution. probably off the table long-term. but big picture is interesting, the republicans with the short term extension, are putting the burden on the shoulders of harry reid to pass it. republicans are sick and tired of getting the full attention in american politics. republicans do not always want to be the story, so they want to make the story the senate. that won't be easy to do, harry reid is very adept at saying no thanks, i want to do my project. but the republicans were humbled on the fiscal cliff, and they want the toss it to the senate.
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>> if i read a lot of the report correctly, it kind of seems like the republican leadership planned, of course, the speakers's planned to retreat the talk their members down, to talk them into a calmer position, from language, how you talk to women and minority voters and to the debt ceiling to some of the other broader political strategy things. you were there, is that kind of a fair read? >> yeah, you could kind of see them back away from some of the more extreme positions as the days went on. you heard -- paul ryan, yesterday, was explaining to reporters what he had been saying, first saying the three-month extension was on the table. they were saying we could change the definition of what default is, fab in the default language, prior, claiming if we hit the ceiling we can pay the important bills. mick mulvaney was saying well, default is not when the national
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parks close, that didn't get -- included in this deal. they were backed down in a way that they can rebel, you may have a filibuster fight in the senate to move it out in the budget, but the lack of certainty from conservatives about what they're going to get in the deal, that was not there in 2009 when it first came up. they were ready to go to the mat. >> and the key person in this deal is paul ryan. it has been fascinating watching him after the election, he voted of course in the fiscal cliff deal. he was there today talking the republicans down on this a little bit. you know, if you thought after the election he would prepare for 2016 if he indeed runs, trying to be a conservative on the right flank, he seems to be on the right of the caucus. >> and one of the best john boehner anecdotes, saying that paul ryan was hanging out, being
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a whispering, talking about the debt limit and about why the short term makes sense. and remember, there has always been a fissure between the leadership and back bench, but ryan appeals to both crowds and taking that responsibility, willingly, happily, being the person to mend fences within these two blocks of the house republican congress. >> it is a huge, interesting development in the political career here. thank you guys for being here and all the great reporting over the week. >> thank you. coming up, republicans have an explanation for their behavior, obama made them do it. and also, why the assault weapons ban is not the most important gun law that congress can pass right now. and plus, while notre dame has been focused on a fake tragedy they have been ignoring a real one. at 1:45, the aflac duck was brought in
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with multiple lacerations to the wing and a fractured beak. surgery was successful, but he will be in a cast until it is fully healed, possibly several months. so, if the duck isn't able to work, how will he pay for his living expenses? aflac. like his rent and car payments? aflac. what about gas and groceries? aflac. cell phone? aflac, but i doubt he'll be using his phone for quite a while cause like i said, he has a fractured beak. [ male announcer ] send the aflac duck a get-well card at
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think of some of the wilder things you have heard republicans saying recently.
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default, socialism, legitimate rape. republicans now have an odd rationale for that behavior, president obama made them do it. that is next. and later tonight, a group of business leaders say they know how to save social security. and here is a hint to their plan. it doesn't involve them paying anymore. with the spark cash card from capital one,
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this may seem obvious. but maybe we should be able the take it for granted that our legislators won't petulantly crash the economy or offend rape survivors. the fact they had to launch a campaign is evidence that something has gone a little bit wrong in the republican party. and you know, no one knows that better than republicans themselves. but this has created a real dilemma for people who care about the party and believe in the ideals, but also believe that something has gone awry with it. you don't want to kick your party, not when its down. so you want to blame president obama, it has birthed the strangest theme of comments. the argument we hear is that the republican party's crazy behavior is on some level president obama's fault. my colleague at "the washington
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post" wrote and early version, he put it, knows that republicans are forced by their ideology that he can easily demagogue, it is the momentum, so he has in a bid to break his opponents decided to force the gop to surrender on the debt limit and require the republicans to accept new taxes in exchange for any new real spending reductions. so the white house's plan is to force republicans to be unreasonable by being themselves reasonable and taking the positions they have had all along, including in the 2012 campaign, which they won. another version came today from "the new york times" columnist, saying they could adopt the strategy, called kill the wounded, the wounded being the republican party. the way the strategy works, the moderate policies on gun control
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and hurricane relief, they will force the republicans to offend main stream supporters or risk a challenge from the right. there is a kind of a delightful logic to this argument, which it is true. the republican party looks really bad because the white house is proposing pretty popular moderate ideas and republicans keep saying no to them. and yeah, it is true that house republicans look kind of crazy when they say they're going to let the white house default on its obligations, regarding the election and that issue. so yeah, if obama was not around the house gop wouldn't be doing all this, and wouldn't look as nuts. so it is kind of obama's fault. of course, the simpler explanation is not that obama planned all this. but the reason they have been taking moderate positions they have taken for years now, those just may be the positions. if the republican party can't agree to them or come up with
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popular ideas of their own, the problem may be within the republican party, not at 1600 pennsylvania avenue. barack obama is the president of the united states. he is a very powerful man, responsible for many things. but he is not why most republicans have taken a pledge, saying they will never raise a dollar in taxes no matter what the budget deficit looks like. he is not why they decided to put the whole u.s. economy at risk if they don't get their way on spending cuts. he is not why the white house partnered with gun legislation, no matter how small, is tantamount to taking away guns, he is not why extreme movements like extreme ideas like going back to a gold standard in the middle of an economic crisis have taken root on the right. this country needs and deserves a better republican party. and there are a lot of people in the republican right now who want a better republican party who are trying to push it there.
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those people, i think include key leaders in the party, like the house republican leaders this week who are trying to talk their members down from the ledge. they include folks like david brooks who in saying that republicans look deeply unreasonable, they are telling republicans you are being unreasonable. you need to move to the center. the structure of their argument a bit weird, but they're pushing in the right direction. for the republican party to fix itself will require a painful process, in which insane voices stare up and stare down, the elements of the coalition, and we need them to do it. we need them to win. coming up, the gun legislation could save more lives in the assault weapons ban. and later, the story that is is not getting nearly the attention it deserves.
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the nra claims that more guns in the hands of the right people would make the country safer. so consider this from tennessee, the ap reports that a state representative, curry todd, pled guilty today to drunk driving and gun charges and will spend 48 hours in jail and the loss of his firearm for a year. the former republican police officer was arrested in nashville after failing a road sobriety test with a loaded .38 caliber next to him in the seat. the law allows them to be armed in bars and restaurants that serve alcohol can because what could go wrong? he told reporters he has no plans to resign. [ male announcer ] how can power consumption in china,
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in the spotlight tonight. the really important proposals president obama made on guns, and why the assault weapon ban
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by far the most controversial, most contested and most covered proposal the president made, is it the most significant of them? take a look at these two guns, can you tell the difference? and in fact, here is a better question, a more important question, can you identify which was legal under the assault weapons ban? they look similar, right? it is because they are. the one on the left is the ar-15, the one on the right, the colt match target rifle, the legal replica of the ar-15, produced when the assault weapons ban was in place, to get around it. the assault weapons ban stopped the features that were cosmetic, a heat shroud around the barrel, or a threaded barrel to which a silencer could be attached. or a bayonet mount, in case you wanted to mount a bayonet on your gun. but when it came to fire power or the amount of ammunition that
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could be loaded into either gun there really was not a huge difference between the one that was banned and the one that was legal. they just had two different names. one of the really good parts of the assault weapons ban, a part that president obama wants to reinstate was a ban on high capacity magazines, ones that limit the amount of bullets, period. even if the gun was legal and they manage to get around the assault weapons ban, it can still have the ability to do harm. one of the reasons the assault weapons ban gets so much attention is it is big, bold policy. one that is graphic and easy to grasp and seems to get right at the gun issue, but like with the bullets and magazines, the more targeted proposals could have an actually bigger impact. a really important proposal, maybe the most important proposal that president obama is fighting for in this gun control push is universal background checks. you may be surprised, there is already a big comprehensive list
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of people who are prevented to have guns, any person who is under indictment, who has been convicted of a crime punishable by prison, for a term exceeding a year, who is a fugitive from justice, addicted to a controlled substance, who has been committed to any mental institution, who is an illegal alien discharged, who renounced their citizenship, who is under court order regarding harassment or a child of an intimate partner. who is convicted of a domestic crime or violence, any of those could disqualify you. and it is also illegal for anyone to sell or transfer guns to any of these people. but we don't actually require background checks to see if they fall into the categories. 40% of all gun transactions occur without a background check. they're private sales in what is
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essentially a shadow, secondary huge and easy to access gun market. president obama wants background checks for every gun sale, so a private, unlicensed collector could still sell their gun to a private collector, but they have to go to a licensed dealer and get that checked. most guns are not equipped with the sensational-style military equipment. it could have a real impact to help keep guns from being used in crimes, and to catch criminals if they unfortunately are. a man who knows very much about this, mark it is good to see you. >> ezra, always a pleasure. >> mark i want to talk to you about a piece of this which is general crime prevention. a fair amount of president obama's gun control package is not about limiting which guns you can buy, but about keeping straw purchasers from buying them and to focus more on gun crime.
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how important is this side of it? >> potentially very important. and that goes along with the different and even less glamorous piece, which is relaxing the current limits in the law on the way that the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives can computerize the data, particularly the data on where the guns come from. and the extent to which they can share the data and the results with local law enforcement. >> so walk me through that a little bit, why is a trace data important? give me an example. >> so say there is a homicide, a drive by, the firearm is recovered. and it has a serial number. well, with the serial number you can run it back through the system and say well, where was that last sold lawfully? because as you say there needs to be a background check every time it is sold. and eventually you can trace it all the way back up to the manufacturer. the main thing is to figure out
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what store sold the gun. now, any store could wind up selling a gun that somebody uses in a homicide. but if you trace 35 prime guns to the same small gun store, then you have to ask whether that gun store is making a specialty of arming bad guys. or is simply sloppy about letting somebody walk in, buy 35 guns, put them in his truck and drive them off to los angeles to sell them. so the trace data can help you understand the mechanisms by which the bad guys get their weapons. >> you have done an enormous amount of work on how to improve policing, such that we bring down violence in sort of hot spot areas, areas with a lot of violence. and one of the things i noticed in the white house's proposal was to both give law enforcement and in particular, give u.s. attorneys both more resources potentially and also more direction to focus on gun violence. when you read this part of it, did that just sound like boiler plate language to you or was that potentially significant?
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>> no, there is more to it. if you actually hurt somebody with a gun and get caught at it, you are likely to get a severe penalty. what you are not likely to get a penalty for is selling a gun dealer to somebody who is not eligible. or the straw purchaser, the person without a felony conviction buying guns on the legal market for re-sale illegally to people who are going to use them in crimes, those violations are now treated as minor regulatory matters. and part of what the president wants to do is make the penalties for gun trafficking more like the penalties for drug trafficking. right now the penalties are so small, that not only are they not a good deterrent, the prosecutors won't even take the cases. they wouldn't spend months making a regulatory case with a
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six-month sentence at the end of it. so there is an order on attorneys to make a proposal, but an order for congress to increase the penalties. a lot of what the president has done is basically fits the nra slogan, which is we don't need more gun controls, we need more enforcement on the controls we already have. so the background check doesn't make anything legal that is illegal now, it will still be illegal if you're a felon, to get a weapon, it just makes it harder to get around the rule. and the trace data. >> speaking of better enforcement of the gun laws we have, one of of the things in their proposal is to actually confirm a nominee to lead the bureau of alcohol and firearms -- >> now that is an original idea. >> there is a fairly long campaign out to degrade the agencies, ranging from the atf to the centers for disease control, which used to do research on gun violence and now are not allowed to, that are sort of involved in enforcing
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the gun laws. is the breakdown of the bureaucracy a meaningful contributor to the problem, or just big governments and it won't matter all that much. >> i think the degradation of the atf matters. and particularly if the new proposals are put in, you need the atf to go after the enforcement of them. the research, of course, is a much longer fuse issue. and i think that is more good government issue. it is just absurd to have ignorant congressmen deciding the research that should be done. right? that ought to be left to research agencies. i am not particularly a fan of some of the research engines that the government funded. but that is an argument that ought to be made in congress. scientists ought to be driven by scientists and not by politicians.
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>> thank you for increasing my vocabulary there at the end. >> thank you. coming up, you have heard about the fiasco at notre dame. no? i don't mean the fake tragedy about the girl. i mean the real tragedy. and later, the business leaders at the table have an idea for social security. and the burden that falls on the company they run. tossing and turning have given way to sleeping. where sleepless nights yield to restful sleep. and lunesta®(eszopiclone) can help you get there. like it has for so many people before. when taking lunesta, don't drive or operate machinery until you feel fully awake. walking, eating, driving, or engaging in other activities while asleep, without remembering it the next day, have been reported. lunesta should not be taken together with alcohol.
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>> you ever heard of the business round table? washington's mega business boeing, as well as walmart, bank of america, fedex, pepsico, if you can name a big organization in america, they're probably part of the business round table. so they try not to make too many enemies in america, they don't want to make their customers mad. but they want a voice, so this week they planned to cut medicare and spending. they planned to lead it off with raising the retirement age to 70, currently for older americans that number is 66, 67, they wanted to raise the medicare eligibility to 70.
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even the house republicans are proposing 67. they are well to the right of the business round table. in the press, their recommendations were treated as totally self-evident. >> it only makes sense that adjustments need to be made now that we're living longer, naturally, people are afraid of change of any sort, and these entitlements are sacred cows for so many. >> it only makes sense. meanwhile, on fox news, well, you watch. >> well now, we're hearing from a group of ceos who are pushing a plan to gradually increase the retirement age to 70? saying that that is what is best for the country's economy. i mean, i laugh, because 70 is not old.
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i mean, are we supposed to react to that as though it is 90? 70, you have to work until 70? >> oh, yes, nothing like highly paid very young television hosts mocking blue collar workers who think that 70 is kind of old to be standing on their feet on the job. 70. if you want to talk about cutting social security that is fine. it is not an unreasonable point of view. you're allowed to have it. but this is people who make more money in a year than most americans will make in a lifetime. people who love their jobs, who don't want to retire at 65 or 70 or 72, suggested that somehow raising the retirement age is a painless cut because they can't imagine it hurting them. i talked about this on the show in november. in november, we talked to the goldman sachs ceo. >> look at the history of these things and social security was not made to be a system that supported you for a 30-year retirement after a 25-year career. so there will be certain thing that is the retirement age has
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to be changed, maybe some of the benefits affected, the inflation adjustments, but in general, entitlements have to be slowed down and contained. >> as i said then, you need to remember that when we talk about these long lives, how much we live, rich folks have gained a lot more of that time than poor ones, since 1967, the number of them retiring is 66. if you're in the bottom half, you only gained an extra 1.3 years, you know when most people actually begin to take social security benefits? they begin at age 62. not 65 or 66. 62, which is as early as the law allows you to take them. and when you take the benefits less you get less over your lifetime. we punish you for your impatience, but they do it anyway. and they do it because they don't want to spend their whole
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lives at that job, unlike folks in finance who have cushy gigs on cable news. they don't want to work until they drop. if you have a job you love and don't need the social security money or medicare insurance anyway, don't pretend that raising the retirement age is painless, don't pretend it doesn't hurt you. what makes it galling, is that in the same document where they propose all of this tough document for medicaid, they exempt themselves, these very rich business leaders of the round table are drawing the line when it comes to raising their own social security taxes, as the reuters report puts it. they rejected putting the number at the maximum threshold, which in 2010 was the maximum. subject to payroll taxes, they said it would hurt the economy. that would be far more damaging,
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they said to economic growth than what we're asking people to consider. if you raise the taxes, you will have an immediate effect on employment and economic activity. so if you're a ceo who makes maybe only a million, you're taxed on the first tenth of your income. if you're making $60,000 a year, every one of your $60,000 is taxed for social security. and this is the kind of thing, it just drives me crazy. you know what the flip side of these guys loving their jobs, never ever wanting to leave not even when they're old and they have lots of grand kids, they're not stopping the ceos of cesars because they're paying payroll taxes on more of their income. they love their job, folks at the top that convince themselves that things wouldn't hurt at all like raising the retirement age, are easy no-brainers, that are just common sense.
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they convinced themselves of things that will hurt them and devastating the economy. when they say no to higher taxes, they are just protecting jobs and growth. as upton sinclair said it is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends on him not understanding it. groups at the round table like to cloak themselves in the economy that what they say and do are informed and driven by wanting just what is best for jobs and for the company. but it seems to often come down to what is best for the ceos. it is good to be on the top. ♪
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[ male announcer ] how do you turn an entrepreneur's dream... ♪ into a scooter that talks to the cloud? ♪ or turn 30-million artifacts... ♪ into a high-tech masterpiece? ♪
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whatever your business challenge, dell has the technology and services to help you solve it. with multiple lacerations to the wing and a fractured beak. surgery was successful, but he will be in a cast until it is fully healed, possibly several months. so, if the duck isn't able to work, how will he pay for his living expenses? aflac. like his rent and car payments? aflac. what about gas and groceries? aflac. cell phone? aflac, but i doubt he'll be using his phone for quite a while cause like i said, he has a fractured beak. [ male announcer ] send the aflac duck a get-well card at
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my first reaction frankly was as a father.
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you know, the -- the way in which young people, our students, our student athletes, my children are at risk in this environment to things like this because you just don't know who you're dealing with. >> that was notre dame's athletic director on wednesday night, speaking about the revelation that a large part of the inspiring story behind their heisman trophy finalist, manti te'o, was to good to be true. in fact, the girlfriend that had died, was not true. questions about how somebody had played a cruel trick, for 30 minutes he talked about how te'o was a victim, and firmly believed he had nothing to to do with the hoax. in 2010, elizabeth seburg, at the college across the street
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from notre dame told the campus police she was sexually assaulted by a notre dame football player. over the next ten days, a friend of the football player sent her multiple text messages, including this one, don't do anything you would regret. messing with notre dame football is a bad idea. lizzie committed suicide on day ten, the campus police didn't get around to questioning the football player until five days after her death. he was found not responsible, and was never taken off the field. my colleague discovered another case, reporting on elizabeth's story, in 2011, a notre dame freshman was taken to the hospital by an assistant. she said she was raped. and because of what happened or didn't happen to seburg, she didn't report it. notre dame has officially washed its hands of the te'o case, he hired an agent and is a professional.
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they no longer have comments on te'o or the fake girlfriend, so journalists wanting to know more will have to look elsewhere. the journalists never verified the existence of the girlfriend. notre dame took te'o at his word can because it was good for notre dame football, good copy. but for lizze seburg, and many others who report being raped by the college athletes, their word is not enough. joining me now, good to see you, amanda. >> good to see you, ezra. >> i want to start with the big question, why did one matter in the media and the other didn't? >> well, one was a good story that everyone wants to hear, the self-sacrificing girlfriend that he only last thought is for her boyfriend to be a big superstar. the other story is a story we don't want to know about, how sometimes these superstars have all of these privileges and entitlement, and feel like they can just walk over whoever they
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want to. >> and what happened, because you have done have work on the other stories here. what happened after? there was a private outside firm that notre dame hired to investigate the te'o situation. was there anything comparable in the other situations? >>, it seems like at the most what notre dame was interested in, at least according to hennenberg's reporting, was that seburg just made it all up, like she was a liar and couldn't get her stories straight. they were way more interested in making her look bad than in investigating what happened that night. >> now, there was an investigation by the civil rights department, did any of those turn up anything of note? >> not that i know so far, they are still in danger of losing a lot of their status as a title ten school.
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>> and what is the sort of broader ecosystem and culture, you talked about the culture of privilege around some of these athletes. and we talked about another woman who was potentially assaulted. there was just kind of a fear of coming forward. you run into sort of a team mentality, you have people angry, questioning your word. so what does it do around the college campuses to women who are assaulted? what kind of culture is there in terms of their willingness to come forward. >> well, women are not unreasonable, you look at this sort of situation and realize that if a football player assaults you, most people's impulse will be to protect the players, the team, deny that it happened, make you go away. most women are going to look at this and say no, i'll be quiet about this and not talk about it. you have to think about what the men on the team are also think about the environment.
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if you want to sexually assault somebody, basically you are being sent the message that you can do it and get away with it. >> in april 2011, the obama administration released through joe biden actually new federal guidelines on how i believe colleges should be responding to these kinds of allegations. and they included speeding up the investigation, offering the investigations or video to the local police, has that changed? do you know if that has been a significant driver of any difference here? >> you know it doesn't seem like it is. just today we learned that unc has a dean that recently retired, accused the school of basically forcing her to under -- misrepresent the number of sexual assaults on campus and say it was much lower than it was because they didn't want their school to look bad. i think what we're dealing with here, there is so much interest in putting up images, that simple little tweaks are not doing the job of getting things better.


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